Orange City Council is set host around 40 recent arrivals from Ukraine next week as part of Refugee Week celebrations.
Orange Mayor, Jason Hamling said the event was an opportunity for Orange residents to learn more about Ukraine as part of the refugee group’s Regional Taster Tour trip to the Central West where they will spend three days visiting Cowra and Orange.
“I’m pleased to learn that this group of recent arrivals in Australia will be making a trip to Orange,” he said.
“We can only imagine the turmoil that these families have been through, and I’m glad they can come here to get a taste of what living in Orange could be like.”
John Burke, from the Orange Social Justice Group, says the trip is about getting a taste of life in a regional Australian centre.
“Since arriving from Ukraine, these families have been living in Sydney. It would be great if they could get an idea of what life in regional Australian could be like,” Mr Burke said.
A free community event will be held on Friday, 17 June at the Orange Regional Conservatorium and members of the Orange community are invited to attend to learn more about the Ukrainian Refugee Program, run by the Community Migrant Resource Centre at Parramatta.
Mr Burke is looking for the support of locals who speak Ukrainian to come along on the night to assist and is encouraging them to get in touch with Council’s Migrant Support Service.
“The evening at the Conservatorium will be a great opportunity to meet and greet our Ukrainian visitors as well as refugee centre staff,” he said.
“Not all the visitors have a good command of English. We’ll have assistance with translation on the night but are looking for more support from our residents who speak Ukrainian.”
A Community Connections activity is also planned during the trip, where local service providers, sporting and Council representatives will meet with the Ukrainians to provide information about moving to the Central West.
“We hope these Ukrainian families get a good sense of what life would be like if they relocated to Orange or Cowra, including what employment opportunities social, sport or cultural activities are available here,” Mr Burke said.
The free community event on Friday 17 June at the Orange Regional Conservatorium, 73a Hill Street, Orange begins at 6.30pm for 7pm.
The event is being organised by Orange City Council’s Migrant Support Service and is funded by the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs and the Orange Social Justice Group.
Free tickets can be booked at Eventbrite.